What is an offer?
An offer is made once a home you want to purchase is found. The offer is a detailed document that becomes the contract for the sale if it is accepted by the seller. A pre-printed contract form is used wherein information and clauses are added. It is then presented to the seller and he may accept, reject, or make a counter-offer. Have your attorney review the offer before presenting it.
This is going to affect not only your life but the seller’s life as well. In writing an offer, you are making a decision that will affect how you and your family will live in the next years to come. The seller, in turn, will review your offer carefully as her future plans will be based on it.
Writing an Offer
This is the first step to take when you find the home you want to purchase. It is a step towards negotiating a contract with the seller. You are aiming at getting what you want, at the same time, taking into consideration the seller’s reaction upon receiving your offer.
- An offer should include:
-description of the property
-purchase price and down payment
-closing and possession dates
-a statement that you expect clear title to the property
-a clause that cancels the contract if you cannot get a mortgage
-repairs that you want done
-an inspection clause that cancels the contract if the building fails to pass a professional inspection like termite and roof inspection.
Home Buying Contingencies
These are written clauses in the contract that give you time to evaluate some aspect of the property before you proceed to closing. If these are not met, the clauses will allow you to back out of the contract with no penalties.
- Common real estate buying contingencies include:
-The type of financing that is acceptable to you should be indicated and a clause that you can back out from if it the terms are not met.
-Rights to home inspections.
-The sale of your current home. Until you have sold your home, you cannot make a purchase.
These contingencies are of no use if they are poorly written. What you are trying to gain should be explained well. And specify what type of results are suitable.
Making a Bid
Do not make an unrealistic offer. It might turn a seller off and negotiations might not push through. If there are multiple offers, the seller usually gets the price that he wants for his home. In order for your offer to catch the seller’s attention in case of multiple offers, offer the highest price you can or make a bigger down payment.
Earnest Money Deposit
Know how much deposit you want to make. It should just be enough to make the seller believe that you are serious. Limiting your deposit may be beneficial to you just in case the contract does not push through. But a bigger deposit impresses a seller. He may accept it and become more inclined to accept a lower offer.
The Closing Date
Both the buyer and the seller have to plan on moving. The closing date has to be agreed upon. Be flexible because at times problems arise which cannot be avoided. Have back up plans, just in case.
Transfer of Possession
When the deeds have been recorded, you have a closed transaction. The date of occupancy will be agreed upon by the buyer and seller. Usually, a seller is allowed a maximum of three days to turn over possession and keys to the home. The date of transfer should be stipulated so as not to create problems and confusion.
- Once the keys have been handed over to you, do not forget to:
-have the utilities changed to your name
-have phone lines activated
-have your new home cleaned before the move into your Kennewick real estate
-have the locks changed
Related resources for purchase offer fundamentals: Deal in Details | Home Buying Process | Home Buying Cycle | Home Buying Considerations | Purchase Offer Basics | Offer Price Influences | The Agent Derivative